20 February 2020

Carson McDowell reaches landmark with recruitment of 100th solicitor

Carson McDowell, Northern Ireland’s largest law firm, today announced that it has reached the significant milestone of employing 100 lawyers for the first time, over half of whom are female. This brings the firm’s total headcount to 180.

By recruiting Lynsay Black to the firm’s Banking Team, Carson McDowell is the first NI law firm to achieve this landmark number, which puts it significantly ahead of its closest competitor.

It has seen strong growth across the business, with solicitors at all levels joining practice areas including Corporate, Planning, Construction, Banking, Healthcare, Regulatory and Professional Discipline, Employment, Real Estate, Litigation, IT & Technology in the past year.

The firm, which employs an additional 80 staff across marketing, finance, IT and administration, also expanded its Healthcare Team in Dublin in 2019, moving to larger offices to accommodate the expected future growth of this practice area.

Carson McDowell achieved its best-ever rankings in the 2020 editions of the legal profession’s two most respected industry guides, Chambers UK and the Legal 500. The firm continued its record of outperforming all other local legal firms, by excelling in more practice areas and having more of their lawyers ranked in the highest categories.

Managing Partner Roger McMillan, said that as the demands for specialist legal expertise increase across its client base, Carson McDowell expects to grow further this year:

“Carson McDowell has always been 100% focused on delivering for our clients and it is testament to the quality of our service that demand for our advice and support continues to rise. We are fortunate to represent a large number of commercially sophisticated local businesses and high-profile international clients operating in and from Northern Ireland.

“The firm has been good at identifying niche services not provided by other firms in the region and investing in expertise in fast growing sectors like energy and technology. We are quietly optimistic about 2020 and I expect us to continue our longstanding policy of hiring and developing the best talent across all practice areas. Indeed, with the offers that have already been accepted, we expect to have close to 110 solicitors by the end of March, which would place us in the top 10 largest firms on the island of Ireland.

“The firm has almost twice as many female solicitors as it does male and, indeed, has more female than male partners. We are fiercely proud of this statistic, which further demonstrates our unique position in Northern Ireland.”

The Chambers UK guide, which ranks the best law firms and lawyers, covers 50 cities and counties in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. In the Chambers 2020 listing, Carson McDowell achieved ‘Band one’ rating in 21 out of 26 practice areas and 23 partners were given the top accolade. This high number of band one classifications meant the firm significantly outperformed any of the other Northern Irish law firms featured in the guide.

In Legal 500, Carson McDowell had the highest number of practice areas ranked in the Top Tier category and had more solicitors named as “leading individuals” than any other Northern Ireland firm.